If there’s a lesson from SXSW it is that a brand must determine how to stand out during a major event. During events sponsors, musicians, and directors all compete for consumer attention, so it is imperative that a brand strategize effective ways to capture as much attention as possible. Converting potential consumers into brand loyalists is the final goal of being involved with a major event; it’ll also alleviate the financial hit a brand takes when aligning with an event. As a “super sponsor” for SXSW, Doritos is doing a great job at getting consumer attention, being creative, and positioning its product in the limelight. To replicate such success, brands must know how their product can interact with an audience, be unique, and promote their work competitively.
How Can Your Product Interact with an Audience?
Doritos involvement with SXSW wasn’t to showcase the tortilla chip brand as a whole, but specifically their newest product JACKED. This addition to the chip family is different as the chips are bigger, thicker, crispier, crunchier. Understanding the attributes of JACKED chips, Doritos then needs to understand the preferences and motivations of the event attendees and how the two parallel. SXSW’s almost 20,000 attendees (like any demographic) vary in different respects, but one commonality is a passion for music. Whether it’s streamed or live, a brand sponsoring an event like this won’t struggle to find a connecting point. In this way, the manner in which Doritos communicates and promotes its brand at SXSW is different from how it will communicate throughout the year. Knowing that the bridge from audience to brand can be built upon music, the next thing to do is be unique.
Be Undeniably Unique
To showcase Doritos’ big chips during a big event, Doritos did something just as big. They built a six-story vending machine which sells Doritos, shoots lasers, and acts as the stage for musical performances. Standing at 62 feet high, the vending machine is a major focal point and attention grabber on the streets of Austin. On one side of the oversized vending machine, attendees deposit giant quarters and quickly receive chips and prizes. On the front of the machine, attendees line up to watch incredible musical performances from acts such as Chiddy Bang and LL Cool J. What made this unique is Doritos created an experience for its audience that focused around JACKED chips. Incorporating an interactive vending machine into the whole experience only made Doritos something to discuss on the web.
Promote! Promote! Promote!
I can’t stress enough how important it is for a brand to promote their efforts when it wants to reach a broader audience. For this event, Doritos released commercials, promos, and concert videos so people would be well aware of what was happening at the event. To create buzz, Doritos released pictures of the location and stage before the event and dropped a video showing its surprise headliner. To get people talking, Doritos made use of the hashtag ‘#boldstage’ on Twitter and cross promoted it on Facebook and YouTube. Promoting Doritos’ creative efforts and musical lineup on a variety of social media channels is a great way to connect with people and to get them talking.
Connecting a brand with an audience, being creatively different, and promoting work across social media mediums are a few of the ways to get a brand to stand out during a major event. If done effectively and somewhat aggressively a brand will be able to stand out in an event overwhelmed with sponsors and make an impression on the audience.
Doritos JACKED Vending Machine at SXSW